Brangelina Split Highlights Divorce Complexity and Trends

Hossein Berenji, Oct 01, 2016

Any couple faces the challenges of marriage, but Hollywood couples are in the spotlight with an enhanced focus on the details of their private life. With this comes added complexity, particularly if the marriage ends and children are involved. Fans of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie expressed their shock in the hours immediately after the news broke that Hollywood’s pre-eminent golden couple was calling it quits.

Their divorce demonstrates several common trends among not just celebrity divorces but those across the U.S. Read on to learn more about these concerns and why it’s so important to hire the right divorce lawyer to help you.

Less Hope for “Golden Couples”

Part of the reason the Pitt/Jolie divorce is making so many headlines is because they were long thought to be proof that love could persist even with celebrity status. A new study out of USC shows that 67 percent of the public no longer believe that there’s such a thing as a “golden couple.”

Given that between 40 and 50 percent of U.S. marriages will end in divorce, untying the knot is relatively common for both the general public and for celebrities.

Abuse as a Factor Prompting Divorce

The official legal documents Jolie filed for the divorce cite irreconcilable differences, but reports emerged shortly after that explaining that substance abuse and anger issues were a major factor leading to the split. These allegations became the foundation for Jolie’s pursuit of sole physical custody. Domestic violence as an element in relationship breakdowns is certainly nothing new, as accusations against Johnny Depp have previously made the news.

Collaborative Divorce

While there are certainly plenty of California and U.S. divorces that find their way into litigation, more couples are aware of the emotional and financial expense of battling over issues for months or years. That’s why collaborative divorce has emerged as a popular option for couples to work together.

Rather than arguing with one another via court motions and the like, collaborative divorce engages a team of both spouse’s lawyers, a financial professional, and someone with a background in mental health. Working together in this collaborative sense often gives both parties in the divorce more say over how the divorce unfolds and can minimize tension, expense, and time spent resolving issues.

If you’re thinking about getting a divorce in California, it’s well worth your time to speak directly to an experienced California family lawyer about your options. If you and your spouse are able to work together to resolve issues, you can achieve more personalized outcomes with less expense.

Privacy During a Divorce

Most Hollywood divorces have an element of attempted privacy, but there’s reason for any couple to want to shield the inner details of their marital dissolution from the public at large. This is, in fact, a reason why collaborative divorce and mediation have become increasingly popular. If you’d rather hash things out behind closed doors and attempt to come to a resolution with the other spouse, finding the right California divorce attorney to help you with this process can help significantly.

Breaking the news to the children, family, and friends, can be difficult. If you and your former spouse are able to be on the same page about explaining the divorce to the children, this can make the transition easier for all. Try to avoid making statements of blame and reassure the children throughout this process that they are loved and that the divorce is not their fault. As much as possible, strive to keep their surroundings as stable as you can.

Child Custody

Perhaps one of the most emotional and difficult aspects of divorce in California has to do with what happens to child custody and visitation. Both parents are likely to feel equally invested in an outcome that prioritizes fair time with each, but child custody is frequently contested and can involve months before a resolution is stated.

Pitt and Jolie came to a voluntary agreement of their own regarding their six children and both parents agreed to participate in individual counseling. The stakes were higher for Pitt, however, who agreed to submit to alcohol and drug testing. His first visit with the kids would also include a therapist.

Unfortunately, collaborative agreements over child custody is not always possible. If both parents are unable to reach an agreement on their own, the court will be responsible for evaluating the best interests of the children and determining custody and visitation issues. Contested child custody can become emotionally difficult for both parents and children.

What to Do If You’re Thinking About Getting Divorced in California

If you’re considering moving forward with a divorce in Los Angeles, it’s strongly recommended that you consult with an experienced attorney. Speaking with an attorney does not obligate you to file for divorce, but it is an excellent opportunity to determine the right course of action for you and for you to get your questions answered.

Given that divorce can have such significant implications for adults and children involved in a divorce, finding the right lawyer can make a big difference for all. It is especially important to partner with an experienced attorney if your divorce involves complex issues like child custody or allegations of domestic violence. Your divorce attorney should be committed to looking out for your best interests, including whether or not collaborative divorce is a viable alternative.

Help yourself by gathering any relevant documents associated with the marriage, including any prenuptial agreements and an inventory of assets and debts, prior to your first meeting with an experience divorce lawyer.

Do you have divorce questions? Set up a meeting with a Berenji & Associates today to learn more.